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Safety in Hand Surgery: Eliminating Wrong-Site Surgery

Brown, Ronald D., M.D.; Hammert, Warren C., M.D.

Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery: October 2018 - Volume 142 - Issue 4 - p 561e-565e
doi: 10.1097/PRS.0000000000004803
Patient Safety CME

Learning Objectives: After studying this article, the participant should be able to: 1. Understand the definition of wrong-site surgery and what it may encompass. 2. State the causes of wrong-site hand surgery. 3. Give examples of initiatives used to prevent wrong-site surgery. 4. Describe a process to minimize the risk of performing wrong-site surgery.

Summary: Wrong-site surgery remains a problem in our ever-evolving culture of surgical safety, and hand surgeons are at particularly high risk. Broadly speaking, wrong-site surgery is a procedure performed at an incorrect anatomical site. In hand surgery, this includes errors in laterality, wrong digit(s), wrong procedure(s), or even a failure to complete all indicated procedures. This article examines the scope of this safety issue, the current challenges to preventing wrong-site surgery, and the authors’ proposed solutions to eliminating wrong-site surgery and establishing a culture of safety in hand surgery.

Patient Safety CME.

Rochester, N.Y.

From the Division of Plastic Surgery and the Department of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation, University of Rochester Medical Center.

Received for publication February 9, 2018; accepted May 30, 2018.

Disclosure:The authors have no financial disclosures.

By reading this article, you are entitled to claim one (1) hour of Category 2 Patient Safety Credit. ASPS members can claim this credit by logging in to Dashboard, clicking “Submit CME,” and completing the form.

Warren C. Hammert, M.D., 601 Elmwood Avenue, Box 665, Rochester, N.Y. 14642,

Copyright © 2018 by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons